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Vikings!

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Emphyrio
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Vikings!

Quote:
So, like we did for Pirates, let's list all things Viking, and see what use they could serve in a game, beyond theme:

Dragon-headed longboats beaching silently out of the mist
Pointy-horned helmets and round shields
Fur vests and strappy sandals
Beards
Norse mythology
Hordes of dauntless marauders
Berserkers
Pillaging and Burning towns
Building great halls to hold celerations and feasts
long epics and sagas

How about exploration? The Vikings discovered Iceland, Greenland, and North America (well, it was new to them anyway). That could add a lot of flavor to a game, especially if the areas on the other side of the ocean were random (and possibly included the edge of the world).

I also like the idea of a game role for sagas -- maybe your victory points are based not just on what you do (pillage, explore, etc.) but on how well your skald sings about it.

soulbeach
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Yeah, i like what Emphyrio proposes, like Tikal tiles as you explore the forest. The edge of the world? oh yeah!! This is where the norse Gods dwell and awaits the unlucky travellers.

Have you read the French (Belgian?) comic book "Thorgal"? Very fantasy: a human looking Alien is accepted as one of their own by a clan. Grown up, he has to try and understand his origins and why the hell the Gods keep getting him involved in their own problems. Very interesting storyline

soul

JeffK
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Vikings!

OK, this is my first bit of input on another's design, so take it for what it's worth. ;)

I think Hedge's idea of making the focus of the game glory, rather than loot, is a good one. Of course, a Viking would need the loot to get more men to get the glory.

For instance, each player may start out with a small ship able only to hold a few men and a small amount of loot. As they plunder, they amass more loot and, importantly, gain glory. Eventually they can buy bigger ships that can hold more men and more loot so they can plunder bigger villages and haul more loot. Of course bigger ships may move a bit more slowly, so you would need sufficient vikings on board to compensate for the mass of the ship or risk falling behind as players in smaller ships zip around to smaller villages at lightning speed.

The glory a player gets for plundering village increases arithmetically (or is it geometrically? I can never remember which is which) with the size of the village. A level 1 village may give one glory, a level 2 gives 3, a level 3 gives 6 and so forth. Player may need, for instance, X+1 vikings to loot a village where X = the level of the village. Pillaging should also run the risk of losing vikings, with that risk decreasing if you have more vikings.

Thus, players must amass loot to win, but loot is not the actual object of the game. Any loot left over at the end of the game (however that is determined) would thust be wasted, requiring players to use their loot or lose it. In addition, players would be racing to defeat the stronger villages to get those glory points, but stronger villages would also pose more risk of losing your precious vikings.

I hope you find some of these ideas helpful. I do like the idea of a Viking game. :)

Drwantanabe
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Sorry. I'm too lazy to read all the others but I have somethings you may want to hear.

1. That's a cool idea. Vikings truely rock.

2. You may wan't to romantisize the idea a bit like with pirates. For example, real pirates were not as charming as the ones we love today (o.k. I'll say it. Thank you Disney)

3. Speaking of pirates, there is a board game called "Pirates Cove" which is similar to what you are making. You should try it out, first of all because its rather spiffy, second of all, in order to make sure your game doesn't end up too much like it

I actually don't have any cool ideas except for maybe skills you could give your viking along the ways to improve his sucess
(Sailing, charismatic, berzerkers whatever)

O.K. that's all.

Johan
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Hedge-o-Matic wrote:
Johan wrote:
Is Canada a worth raiding…

No, no, below Canada... it's big, has lots of states... and apple pie...
OK...raid the land below Canada...Its now on my list on what to do...

Quote:
As far as a Viking game goes, though, I think you can go two ways, either historically accurate, or cartoon caricature. Personally, I'd lean toward the cartoon approach, given the vast amount of Viking-ish flavor that could be thrown in. (Viking-ish flavor? Eew! Sweaty!)

I would also go for the cartoon variant, but added details that would give it some extra flavor.

JeffK wrote:
OK, this is my first bit of input on another's design, so take it for what it's worth. ;)

I think Hedge's idea of making the focus of the game glory, rather than loot, is a good one. Of course, a Viking would need the loot to get more men to get the glory.

For instance, each player may start out with a small ship able only to hold a few men and a small amount of loot. As they plunder, they amass more loot and, importantly, gain glory. Eventually they can buy bigger ships that can hold more men and more loot so they can plunder bigger villages and haul more loot. Of course bigger ships may move a bit more slowly, so you would need sufficient vikings on board to compensate for the mass of the ship or risk falling behind as players in smaller ships zip around to smaller villages at lightning speed.

The glory a player gets for plundering village increases arithmetically (or is it geometrically? I can never remember which is which) with the size of the village. A level 1 village may give one glory, a level 2 gives 3, a level 3 gives 6 and so forth. Player may need, for instance, X+1 vikings to loot a village where X = the level of the village. Pillaging should also run the risk of losing vikings, with that risk decreasing if you have more vikings.

Thus, players must amass loot to win, but loot is not the actual object of the game. Any loot left over at the end of the game (however that is determined) would thust be wasted, requiring players to use their loot or lose it. In addition, players would be racing to defeat the stronger villages to get those glory points, but stronger villages would also pose more risk of losing your precious vikings.

I hope you find some of these ideas helpful. I do like the idea of a Viking game. :)
OK...raid NY, Long Island first ...The list is now updated. ;)

As a first basic platform it could work but right now you just have a racing game where you try to be the first to the loot. You have to add a lot of interaction between the players.
If you only add the possibility to attack each other then you can end up with the one or several of these problems:
- Its no point raiding anyone because the loot at the villages is better.
- Its better to attack other ships because it is a lower risk.
- You can get a Get the leader syndrome. (Keep the leader down).
- You can get the Run away leader syndrome, (a leader that has a bigger ship attack the others to keep there loot down.
- You can get a Attack the week syndrome (a player that is left behind will be the easy target for the other players and have never a chance to expand).

// Johan

Nestalawe
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Vikings!

I agree that there needs to be some nice areas of the game where there is some involved player interaction. There could easily be several parts to the game -

- The Sailing/Raiding. Moving your ships around, targetting various sites, exciting combat, choices over where to go - how far it is makes the trip longer, but wealthier sites may be further away, sites that are plundered will take time to get prosperous again (if ever) and sites that get plundered too often may either stay impovershed, or stauncher sites will get beefed up defensive-wise. Also, how good is the Vikings intel? Maybe that monastery that they raided last season is no longer there? Or maybe it was thought holy enough that the Church sent them coffers of gold to build up their defenses

- The Boasting/Epic-Making. This is the Glory side of things. There could be some neat player interaction here - you need to have other Clans to boast to, and you want worthy 'competitors' to gain advantage over. What clans have the best skalds? What clans were busy wheeling and dealing at home while their boys were old pillaging?

- The Politics. Linked in with the Boasting/Epic-Making part of the game. Law was also a big Thing (pun intended...) amongst the Vikings. Also one-on-one duels. There was also a class structure. What kind of problems are brewing at home? What conflicts are there? What is happening with the King? There were very strong social bonds and there is a lot of room for player interaction.

- Religion. Ah the Norse Gods! What Viking game could thnk of being complete without Odin, Thor and Loki! How do the gods affect your clan? How powerful are your Priests? What Gods do you favour the most, and which favour you? Have your sacrifices been worthy or do you come home to find your lands in devestation?

Hmm, I've always liked Vikings, mayhaps I should start working on a game myself, very tempting...

P.S. Ah yes, forgot about Beserkers, gotta have Beserkers running around in their wolf-skin loin-cloths ;)

Nestalawe
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Gah, I suck, and you all suck too! - I Really want to make a Viking game now, and I got heaps of cool ideas from my posting above...

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...

JeffK
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Johan wrote:

OK...raid NY, Long Island first ...The list is now updated. ;)

Sweet! Finally something interesting will happen here!

Quote:

As a first basic platform it could work but right now you just have a racing game where you try to be the first to the loot. You have to add a lot of interaction between the players.

Very true. A few possibilities, above and beyond raiding each others' ships as you mentioned, could be:

-Have the largest villages be too powerful to raid alone, forcing players to make temporary alliances if they want to reap the rewards there, which could be a) lots of glory and/or b) special action cards that can only be found at these sites.
-Each player could 'own' a Viking Village, each of which has an equipment/skill that can only be purchased at those villages (i.e. berserkers, weapons, ship upgrades, etc.) Thus, to gain these advantages your loot would have to go to other players. Players could negotiate the cost of these upgrades. Players may even be allowed to trade Vikings/cards for upgrades if it would work within the rules structure.
-The aforementioned action cards could be played on other players to hinder their progress.

A certain level of cooperation would be required to win, but of course you don't want to help others TOO much.

-Jeff

NetWolf
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Vikings!

The original intent I had for allowing other players to raid each other wasn't to substitute the goods pillaged from villages, but to prevent said player from getting their loot home. More of a defenseive attack rather than an offensive one.

I LIKE the glory idea. I could go back to the old Beowulf title "Gold-Giver" and allow glory to be built up at the end of each return, after all your vikings have been paid. The excess gold is converted into Glory points. You could also use your gold to purchase Scops/Bards. This would cost quite a bit, but it would allow a steady return of gold rather than a lump sum.

I want to add in the aspect of Runes and random events. I could see a Fate deck with special effects listed on them such as "Caught in a storm" that halves a player's movement, or "Berserker" which adds 1 to your combat rolls for the remainder of the season.

Villages and towns will definately be scattered and random. My idea for this was to have each player place a single village at the begining of the game. Then, each round the players may either place a new village or upgrade an existing village. This causes them to strategically place the bigger towns farther away as long as they plan on buying that bigger ship. If a character decides to use smaller ships primarily, then they would place small towns closer to their home. This runs the risk of having larger raid parties come through and sack it before they get to it.

"Hey guys, we're out of mead..."
"We are almost home."
"Hey, there's a village. Let's plunder that on the way. We can restock our drink and take some fine, young slaves!"

markmist
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Vikings!

Nestalawe wrote:
Gah, I suck, and you all suck too! - I Really want to make a Viking game now, and I got heaps of cool ideas from my posting above...

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...
Nestalawe,

I see no reason why you can't work on a viking game. There are hundreds of pirate games out there (and new ones coming out all the time) and very few viking games. I think you have some great ideas.

Vikings as the theme for the next GDS?? Seems like there is enough interest.....

Nestalawe
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markmist wrote:
Nestalawe wrote:
Gah, I suck, and you all suck too! - I Really want to make a Viking game now, and I got heaps of cool ideas from my posting above...

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...
Nestalawe,

I see no reason why you can't work on a viking game. There are hundreds of pirate games out there (and new ones coming out all the time) and very few viking games. I think you have some great ideas.

Vikings as the theme for the next GDS?? Seems like there is enough interest.....

Heh heh, I didn't mean I wouldn't make a Viking game, only that I have some other games I need to finish first ;)

But, I find it good to be able to work on more than one game at once, and there is a host of material ready for the plucking on Vikings. Hmm, I posted that this morning and I have already spent the whole day researching the Vikings and Norse Mythology, as well as hunting down other Viking-related games already out there... And what I have in mind will be different to whats around so far, and NetWolf's ideas...

Cheers MM, I am sure in a month or so's time I will have an outline setup ready for testing...

doho123
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Vikings!

WHile not quite Vikings, someone above mentioned Beowulf, so I thought I'd pass this link along:

Beowulf

Doesn't capture the theme very well (as others here try to do), but it's still a pretty good game for what it is (aside from the hopelessly tiny icons on the board), and could provide some inspiration.

Nestalawe
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doho123 wrote:
WHile not quite Vikings, someone above mentioned Beowulf, so I thought I'd pass this link along:

Beowulf

Doesn't capture the theme very well (as others here try to do), but it's still a pretty good game for what it is (aside from the hopelessly tiny icons on the board), and could provide some inspiration.

Yeah, from my readings it seems to just have the theme tacked on to the game system...

Surely they should have brought the game out alongside the film, or was it that the film was delayed?

Jebbou
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Vikings!

Hello!

I really like the theme, although I have difficulty to envision player interraction other than direct combat. Nevertheless, this is what I came up with:

Each village/town on the board could have a series of loot available, and each time the village is raided, the whole lot is taken. In the following turns, the village is slowly ressuplied (one item each turn).

For example: The city of London has the following loot available: one gold chest, one sheep, one weapon and one jewel. (One token of each color). If a player raid London, he may take all loot available there. In the following turn, when there is no viking ship present in the town, one gold token is added on London, and the later turn, the sheep is added, and so on until the town is fully ressuplied. A player could raid a town which is not fully ressuplied, but would only take the loot tokens present on the city.

Using this mechanism would allow players to prevent a player from achieving a goal by raiding ports containing what he needs, without direct combat.

Different loot could be required to upgrade certain elements (à la Goa) such as: Combat, Sailing, Exploration, Notoriety, etc. It could also be used to achieve certain goals (like building Wonders). Certain towns could have more loot available, but have a greater defense level. Each raid could increase the defense rating of a town by one. You could also devise a mechanism to have imperial fleets patrolling the seas and defending towns (similar to the brigand token of Settlers). Players could also discover special locations through exploration (Stonehendge, etc).

Jeb

soulbeach
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It does seem like a great theme for GDS.

This thread stirs lots of good ideas...I might get started on a viking game also ;)

I remember last year's protospiel where there was a game about Vikings VS Beavers in a design contest. I think the game is being developped as we speak. Funny theme!

soulbeach

sedjtroll
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Vikings!

I really like the idea of a game about Vikings. Here are couple thoughts off the top of my head, based mostly on just what I've read in this thread...

It's been mentioned that the Vikings weren't all about fighting, they were basically businessmen. Tough, butch businessmen. As such, I feel like the game ought to be about trading (a little economics and/or resource management, goods) with an option to sack or raid available. Obviously, raiding might get you some goods or money or whatever from a town, but it would make dealings with that town tougher afterwards. Probably (a) no more regular trade (or trade at a much less attractive rate), and (b) More difficult to raid in the future as well.

I suppose each player would be a head honcho in a different sect/order/group/gang of Vikings. I don't know if there were different groups of Vikings in real life, but for game purposes it seems to make sense. An alternative would be that one player's team is 'Vikings', while another is [some other historical group that coexisted with Vikings], etc.

So maybe each player is a Viking 'general' (is there a name for that?), trying to gain Noteriety. There's some system of economics in order to facilitate actions which eventually lead to noteriety. One such action would be attacking... either another player, or a neutral (i.e. NPC) party. Perhaps nother way to gain noteriety could be to promote business in a town, like the opposite of raiding and attacking. So a player could either become a famous, well liked Viking, or an infamous, piratous Viking, depending on his approach to the game.

- Seth

NetWolf
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Vikings!

The problem with implimenting trading and exploration into the game, it becomes a clone of Viking Rage.

soulbeach
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In a similar line of thought to sedjtroll (it started this way, at least;) ): each player could have X number of villages, spread over the game board. At set up, players woul choose where to place their villages one at a time: somekind of system would be used to distinguish every village' ownership. This creates a political/raid/trade arena where players can still use the ships' mechanics of x number of vikings leads to this much speed and space for loots/merchandise.

Add to this a few neutral villages ("burn 'em down!! hahaha!"), reputation points, gold or trade value form merchandise/loot in gold and glory value. clan Leaders (the players), would try then to gain victory by different means: X target level of glory/reputation/gold to become the next Clan of clans.

Player can then freely choose to negotiate wih one another, raid a specific player, create alliances...

From there, a central ruling body, the Clan of clans, would be the ruler and decision maker for the glory aspect of the game: having rules and deeds charts from the ancients' traditions: these would promote certain decisions by players as to what to do to gain influence by the Clan of clans.

soulbeach
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Vikings!

NetWolf, do you have a link to viking rage?

soul

Nestalawe
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soulbeach wrote:
NetWolf, do you have a link to viking rage?

soul

I think he meant Viking Fury

NetWolf
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Ah, yes! That's the one.

soulbeach
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It DOES look like viking fury, a lot!

soul

snak_attack
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I remember reading about the importance of gift giving in the premodern Germanic world. If I give someone a gift, it displays my wealth and importance, and puts them in debt to me. So a great leader is characterized more by his ability to give gifts to his men than his standing wealth. Now, you can work this thematic element in while also managing run away leaders by allowing players to transfer wealth to other (poorer) players, producing fame/reputation (victory points) in the process. All this talk of fighting and stealing treasure seems like you'll have many games with one player really getting out of control. This might be a way to limit that.

sedjtroll
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snak_attack wrote:
...a great leader is characterized more by his ability to give gifts to his men than his standing wealth. Now, you can work this thematic element in while also managing run away leaders by allowing players to transfer wealth to other (poorer) players, producing fame/reputation (victory points) in the process.

This sounds really good!

soulbeach
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Quote:
snak_attack wrote:
...a great leader is characterized more by his ability to give gifts to his men than his standing wealth. Now, you can work this thematic element in while also managing run away leaders by allowing players to transfer wealth to other (poorer) players, producing fame/reputation (victory points) in the process.

It does sound VERY good! Interesting and new to me :) Brings the whole thing into a different perspective. Creates new opportunities for players, new choices to be made!

soul

Hedge-o-Matic
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Vikings!

Okay, how many of us have started Viking games in the last day or two? Be honest!

TheReluctantGeneral
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Vikings!

Heck, why not make it next months GDS :-)

soulbeach
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I did not start a Viking game, maybe in the future. This thread produced really good material...

I'm too busy right now with my main project. Being the designer and doing all the art for the game at the same time makes me VERY busy but i love it! It's a great experience!

:)

soulbeach

Zzzzz
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Hedge-o-Matic wrote:
Okay, how many of us have started Viking games in the last day or two? Be honest!

Ok I have started thinking about 3 games using different ideas for Vikings.

Titles and short description (unoffical):

British Isles: AD 800
An invasion and warefare based game. To simulated the invasions by the vikings on the British Isles around the year AD 800. A co-operative game where players take on the roles of vikings and attempt to take over the British Isles.

Viking Age
The rise and fall of the Norse. And you are there to be part of it all. Take part in the epic battles and daily grind of the Northmen. Politics, farming and raiding are all part of a days job. Do you seek great wealth? Do you seek honor and glory? Are you the the next Viking King? Make your place in history before you are history!

Northmen
Simple and fast game where players hack and slash the evils that seek to take over the land. Players take the position as a Northmen ready for battle and have to hold of the onslaught of evils that attempt to invade their land. Sadly for them, the evils never stop and only the last standing can claim true honor and glory!

NetWolf
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Vikings!

All three sound really good, though the Viking Age sounds like it would be very time consuming.

The British Isles sounds like it would be an interesting wargame. Fighting against Angles, Saxons, Picts (time period?), and the Irish! You could even broaden the theme and simply call it the Conquest of the British Isles and allow players to take the role of the various groups vying for controll.

Northmen sounds like a fun, dark, last man standing game. Something simply grasped byt with enough variability that it could be played multiple times with the same enthusiasm. Just don't be the one to draw the Wyrm!

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